Historic Mount Olivet Cemetery in South Side to Receive State Funding for Maintenance | Richmond Free Press



A black cemetery belonging to historic South Side has received a state grant to help maintain 4,617 graves.

City Hall announced that the state’s Department of Historic Resources has recognized Mount Olivet Cemetery off Hopkins Road in the South Side as an eligible cemetery for state support and has agreed to provide $ 23,085 per year. , or $ 5 per grave.

The public cemetery is the beneficiary of the General Assembly’s decision earlier this year to shift support for the maintenance of graves from Confederate cemeteries to black cemeteries dating from the 19th century or earlier.

The city awarded Kathryn Whittington of The Valentine Museum her help documenting the history of the cemetery and the burial sites eligible for support.

Mount Olivet dates from 1874. The city of Manchester, later annexed to Richmond, created the cemetery as a “colored section” adjacent to the Maury Cemetery, then reserved for whites, which faces Maury Street.

In 1910, following the annexation of Manchester, the Richmond Board of Directors approved a request from a charitable company called the Love and Union Club to rename the “colorful section” of Mount Olivet Cemetery.

The cemetery contains the graves of many influential black people, such as the region’s first black delegate, Ballard T. Edwards; educator James Blackwell Sr. and his physician son, Dr. James Blackwell Jr .; City Councilor Claudette Black McDaniel; and two longtime pastors of the First Baptist Church in South Richmond, the Reverend Anthony Binga Jr. and the Reverend WL Ransome.



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